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(The New Yorker)   Dungeons & Dragons turns forty this year, still locked in adolescence   (newyorker.com) divider line 97
    More: Spiffy, Dungeons & Dragons, Wizards of the Coast, David Lindsay-Abaire, Ta-Nehisi Coates, Gary Gygax, fictional world, Ursula K. Le Guin, Lake Geneva  
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1631 clicks; posted to Geek » on 20 Jul 2014 at 10:12 AM (8 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2014-07-20 09:19:40 AM
Roll to see if you encounter a rogue gaming party and then tell me if your THAC0 is above ten.
 
2014-07-20 09:45:09 AM

SphericalTime: Roll to see if you encounter a rogue gaming party and then tell me if your THAC0 is above ten.


(rolls die) 17 ... and yes.
 
2014-07-20 10:19:38 AM
I summon a 10 hit die gazebo.
 
2014-07-20 10:24:18 AM
guides.gamepressure.com
 
2014-07-20 10:24:21 AM
img.photobucket.com
 
2014-07-20 10:25:40 AM
No comment to the previous, just like that pic...nice memorial.

Also, they had "Gary Gygax" on the Dead Author's Podcast fairly recently.  I rather enjoyed it.

/Never played
//Prefer Munchkin, personally
 
2014-07-20 10:27:48 AM
The latest set of rules (5th ed) is said to be pretty good, and the minimal amount [for all levels] is now free http://www.wizards.com/dnd/Article.aspx?x=dnd/basicrules (monsters not yet added).  Although I would have to assume that the typical farker would prefer his set of safely tucked away books.

/old AD&D player
//more recent Dungeons and Dragons Online player
 
2014-07-20 10:31:38 AM
Completely odd that everybody goes apeshiat for fantasy games like Dragon's Age or fantasy shows like Game of Thrones but totally shiats on fantasy table games like Dungeons and Dragons.
 
2014-07-20 10:34:17 AM

Dhusk: I summon a 10 hit die gazebo.


i14.photobucket.com
 
2014-07-20 10:43:42 AM
I'll stick with World of Darkness.
 
2014-07-20 10:46:58 AM

bifford: Completely odd that everybody goes apeshiat for fantasy games like Dragon's Age or fantasy shows like Game of Thrones but totally shiats on fantasy table games like Dungeons and Dragons.


What, use your 'magination in MY 'Murica!?  What a fukin nerd loser.

/that's why
 
2014-07-20 10:47:21 AM

bifford: Completely odd that everybody goes apeshiat for fantasy games like Dragon's Age or fantasy shows like Game of Thrones but totally shiats on fantasy table games like Dungeons and Dragons.


All media hype.  There is really no difference between playing D&D than there is running a fantasy football team (I do both).

But one is socially acceptable and one is not.
 
2014-07-20 10:50:42 AM

yet_another_wumpus: The latest set of rules (5th ed) is said to be pretty good, and the minimal amount [for all levels] is now free http://www.wizards.com/dnd/Article.aspx?x=dnd/basicrules (monsters not yet added).  Although I would have to assume that the typical farker would prefer his set of safely tucked away books.

/old AD&D player
//more recent Dungeons and Dragons Online player


Our group (all experienced players with 15 to 33 years experience) play tested it up to the last release and hated it. Most still prefer 3.5. I will say it's better than 4th, but that's not saying much.
 
2014-07-20 10:51:07 AM
From the fark thread on Gary Gygax's death:

"Can I have his stuff?"
 
2014-07-20 10:58:31 AM
Played 4th ed once or twice; for a quick and easy game it really is not that bad. I personally prefer WotC 3.5 and Pathfinder (strongly the latter) but I'll play 4th or 5th when it comes out.
 
2014-07-20 11:27:45 AM

yet_another_wumpus: The latest set of rules (5th ed) is said to be pretty good

"They" always say that.

Thing about RPGs is that unless you're playing cyberpunk, the materials really don't need reboots.  It's not like this stuff has to get reinvented every decade.  As far as d20-based high fantasy goes, Pathfinder got it just about right.  The only reason to buy a new system is for a wholly different experience built into the core ruleset, which runs counter to D&D's attempt to sell the same goddamn legacy.
 
2014-07-20 11:30:11 AM

Dhusk: I summon a 10 hit die gazebo.


Is there an arrow sticking out of it?
 
2014-07-20 11:34:36 AM
I still have ALL the first and second edition products. And every dragon up to 250. I need a few back issues of dungeon though. I miss those.
 
2014-07-20 11:36:50 AM

dragonchild: yet_another_wumpus: The latest set of rules (5th ed) is said to be pretty good
"They" always say that.

Thing about RPGs is that unless you're playing cyberpunk, the materials really don't need reboots.  It's not like this stuff has to get reinvented every decade.  As far as d20-based high fantasy goes, Pathfinder got it just about right.  The only reason to buy a new system is for a wholly different experience built into the core ruleset, which runs counter to D&D's attempt to sell the same goddamn legacy.


For funtimes I always enjoyed the fast and loose WEG star wars and Paranoia.

God help the folks that likeRole master, MERP or Battle tech.er
 
2014-07-20 11:40:45 AM
Still slightly better than the adolescents being locked in...
 
2014-07-20 11:58:03 AM
The day I read through "The Keep on the Borderlands" was the day my life changed forever.
 
2014-07-20 11:58:26 AM

img.fark.net

Natural twenty, pretty much snicker snack.

 
2014-07-20 12:24:00 PM
www.piccer.nl
 
2014-07-20 12:38:31 PM

yet_another_wumpus: The latest set of rules (5th ed) is said to be pretty good, and the minimal amount [for all levels] is now free http://www.wizards.com/dnd/Article.aspx?x=dnd/basicrules (monsters not yet added).  Although I would have to assume that the typical farker would prefer his set of safely tucked away books.

/old AD&D player
//more recent Dungeons and Dragons Online player


I'll stick with Pathfinder for now
 
2014-07-20 12:42:39 PM
 
2014-07-20 12:46:14 PM

dragonchild: yet_another_wumpus: The latest set of rules (5th ed) is said to be pretty good
"They" always say that.

Thing about RPGs is that unless you're playing cyberpunk, the materials really don't need reboots.  It's not like this stuff has to get reinvented every decade.  As far as d20-based high fantasy goes, Pathfinder got it just about right.  The only reason to buy a new system is for a wholly different experience built into the core ruleset, which runs counter to D&D's attempt to sell the same goddamn legacy.


Pathfinder is great. Running Rise of the Runelords right now with my group. They are having a blast!
 
2014-07-20 12:47:35 PM

Fano: God help the folks that likeRole master, MERP


You got something against having a separate 100 by 20 matrix hit tables for each weapon and spell with extra tables when you get a critical hit? How does that not appeal to you?
 
2014-07-20 12:59:36 PM
As someone undergoing a move and having spent several days moving very heavy containers of 1.0, 2.0, 3.0, and 3.5 materials... it takes up a LOT of space.. and yet.. not about to get rid of it Would like more opportunity to use them all tho. Even just opening one and paging thru them is enough to bring back a 'happy' feeling.
 
2014-07-20 01:10:55 PM

yet_another_wumpus: The latest set of rules (5th ed) is said to be pretty good, and the minimal amount [for all levels] is now free http://www.wizards.com/dnd/Article.aspx?x=dnd/basicrules (monsters not yet added).  Although I would have to assume that the typical farker would prefer his set of safely tucked away books.

/old AD&D player
//more recent Dungeons and Dragons Online player


I've been playing DDO on and off since 05. It always surprised me that it isn't more popular: good source material, great combat, fun for flower-sniffers or min-max power gamers, etc.

/ghallanda rules
//and another vote for pathfinder
 
2014-07-20 01:11:33 PM

bifford: Completely odd that everybody goes apeshiat for fantasy games like Dragon's Age or fantasy shows like Game of Thrones but totally shiats on fantasy table games like Dungeons and Dragons.


Game of Thrones has boobs.
 
2014-07-20 01:17:49 PM
I would never play D&D again.
I spent 3 years playing it every weekend in the late 80's before there were any fun fantasy video games.
There were a lot of turn based ones, and wizardry which I never owned.
But now there are numerous video games that use the same basic leveling growth model.  These are a billion times more fun.  Because just like there are controlling and annoying assholes in video games, they existed in D&D, but worse.  You had to be very picky about who you played with or they would start with the 'you're doing it all wrong' discussions which devolved into a tedious mess.   Now there are single player games, sadly they are all becoming multi-player where you get grief from strangers.
 
2014-07-20 01:24:01 PM

Mr.Tangent: bifford: Completely odd that everybody goes apeshiat for fantasy games like Dragon's Age or fantasy shows like Game of Thrones but totally shiats on fantasy table games like Dungeons and Dragons.

Game of Thrones has boobs.


So does D&D. And I don't mean the imaginary boobs of the innkeeper. I mean real live boobs. Two, in fact, on every guy playing.
 
2014-07-20 01:24:52 PM
i.imgur.com
 
2014-07-20 01:24:58 PM

rev. dave: I would never play D&D again.
I spent 3 years playing it every weekend in the late 80's before there were any fun fantasy video games.
There were a lot of turn based ones, and wizardry which I never owned.
But now there are numerous video games that use the same basic leveling growth model.  These are a billion times more fun.  Because just like there are controlling and annoying assholes in video games, they existed in D&D, but worse.  You had to be very picky about who you played with or they would start with the 'you're doing it all wrong' discussions which devolved into a tedious mess.   Now there are single player games, sadly they are all becoming multi-player where you get grief from strangers.


If you were playing D&D for the pure fun of levelling growth models, you were seriously doing it wrong.
 
2014-07-20 01:27:05 PM

kyuzokai: yet_another_wumpus: The latest set of rules (5th ed) is said to be pretty good, and the minimal amount [for all levels] is now free http://www.wizards.com/dnd/Article.aspx?x=dnd/basicrules (monsters not yet added).  Although I would have to assume that the typical farker would prefer his set of safely tucked away books.

/old AD&D player
//more recent Dungeons and Dragons Online player

I've been playing DDO on and off since 05. It always surprised me that it isn't more popular: good source material, great combat, fun for flower-sniffers or min-max power gamers, etc.

/ghallanda rules
//and another vote for pathfinder


Not enough D&D in D&DO.

I don't give a shiat what Jack Chick might complain about, I'm keeping my old devil-worshipping incantations dammit!

Blah. I don't feel like it, but I should probably look into running a pirate server or something. The engine is a nice start, all it needs is more D&D in it. Change some names and some spells around. Can't be that hard.
 
2014-07-20 01:32:51 PM

rev. dave: I would never play D&D again.
I spent 3 years playing it every weekend in the late 80's before there were any fun fantasy video games.
There were a lot of turn based ones, and wizardry which I never owned.
But now there are numerous video games that use the same basic leveling growth model.  These are a billion times more fun.  Because just like there are controlling and annoying assholes in video games, they existed in D&D, but worse.  You had to be very picky about who you played with or they would start with the 'you're doing it all wrong' discussions which devolved into a tedious mess.   Now there are single player games, sadly they are all becoming multi-player where you get grief from strangers.


Just pick your friends carefully. In 33 years of playing RPGs I've run into less than five people who were such pedantic rules lawyers that I couldn't deal with them. My current group has been together for 22 years and people have come and gone for various reasons, but we've only had to boot one person because he couldn't play well with the other nerds.

Video games have their place but so does fact to face interaction with other humans. Unless of course you fall somewhere on the high-functioning end of the autism spectrum or have a social-anxiety disorder, in which case carry on playing solo.
 
2014-07-20 01:44:46 PM
And it's not just the social interaction aspect that makes D&D more interesting than online gaming--it's the story flexibility, too.  I'd like to see the online game where your druid can attempt to Beast Friend a nearby griffin, only to discover that it's actually the green dragon you've been hunting wearing a hat of disguise.

/dragon quickly realized it did not have the bluff skill to pull it off
//cone of acid only took out one permanent magic item
 
2014-07-20 01:48:44 PM

Tyrosine: rev. dave: I would never play D&D again.
I spent 3 years playing it every weekend in the late 80's before there were any fun fantasy video games.
There were a lot of turn based ones, and wizardry which I never owned.
But now there are numerous video games that use the same basic leveling growth model.  These are a billion times more fun.  Because just like there are controlling and annoying assholes in video games, they existed in D&D, but worse.  You had to be very picky about who you played with or they would start with the 'you're doing it all wrong' discussions which devolved into a tedious mess.   Now there are single player games, sadly they are all becoming multi-player where you get grief from strangers.

Just pick your friends carefully. In 33 years of playing RPGs I've run into less than five people who were such pedantic rules lawyers that I couldn't deal with them. My current group has been together for 22 years and people have come and gone for various reasons, but we've only had to boot one person because he couldn't play well with the other nerds.

Video games have their place but so does fact to face interaction with other humans. Unless of course you fall somewhere on the high-functioning end of the autism spectrum or have a social-anxiety disorder, in which case carry on playing solo.


My group tried to play Shadowrun 5E earlier this year. Lasted about four sessions before we gave up because of all the dice rolls, formulas, rules, and calculations. I think they forgot to mention Aspergers as one of the pre-requisites.
 
2014-07-20 01:51:58 PM
advanced D. & D.

That drove me nuts the whole way through reading that. Who the hell writes it like that? I couldn't figure out if he meant AD&D or "advanced" like buying the books of artifacts & monsters instead of just using the ones from the DM's G. Like using the class books or just going with what the P's G tells you about yer class.

/Trekkie
//Trekker
 
2014-07-20 01:53:31 PM

Chameleon: If you were playing D&D for the pure fun of levelling growth models, you were seriously doing it wrong.

Not really, it just means he was playing for the leveling growth model and video games are better at that.

If you played D&D in the 1980s for the character development, combat or exploration then in 2014 the system is obsolete.  Video games will give you a far more immersive experience than a bunch of paper & dice (or a simple UI) can ever hope to recreate.  Tabletop RPGs are now a niche within a niche; it remains the best format for freeform interactive storytelling but not much else.

The one thing I don't get are MMOs.  Could never get into them.  The world is basically static and you have no control over the fact that most of the other players are dicks.  You're not ever going to get any sort of meaningful narrative flow going so it's not like I have trouble suspending disbelief as much as lack a reason to do it.
 
2014-07-20 01:59:25 PM
Adult fantasy, my ass.
 
2014-07-20 02:13:14 PM

dragonchild: If you played D&D in the 1980s for the character development, combat or exploration then in 2014 the system is obsolete.  Video games will give you a far more immersive experience than a bunch of paper & dice (or a simple UI) can ever hope to recreate


That is the opposite of what I've ever experienced.  I have never found a video game, no matter how beautifully rendered, to be nearly as immersive as you can find in a good tabletop game with a decent set of GM and players.  Video games are always just a sprite on a screen--they are never something happening to me,with all the emotional involvement that comes with it.

Then again, I play mostly for the story and character dev/interactions, and I've been lucky enough to game primarily with actors.  I realize that not everyone is going for that.  But I feel that if you were just looking for a way to kill stuff and level up, tabletop was never the right medium for you.
 
2014-07-20 02:23:59 PM

Cymbal: My group tried to play Shadowrun 5E earlier this year. Lasted about four sessions before we gave up because of all the dice rolls, formulas, rules, and calculations. I think they forgot to mention Aspergers as one of the pre-requisites.


I mocked Rolemaster and MERP earlier, but 25 years ago I loved those systems, and others like them. There was a time when I equated complexity and detail with quality. These days I just want to enjoy a few hours of gaming without having to do multi-variable calculus and solving hamiltonians. We're currently playing Savage Worlds, which has a fairly simple combat system.
 
2014-07-20 02:36:19 PM
Cymbal:

My group tried to play Shadowrun 5E earlier this year. Lasted about four sessions before we gave up because of all the dice rolls, formulas, rules, and calculations. I think they forgot to mention Aspergers as one of the pre-requisites.

Oh? Maybe I should pick that up. Hm. It -can't- beat old 'Powers and Perils' for self-referential mathematical formuli tho.
 
2014-07-20 02:49:17 PM

dragonchild: Chameleon: If you were playing D&D for the pure fun of levelling growth models, you were seriously doing it wrong.
Not really, it just means he was playing for the leveling growth model and video games are better at that.

If you played D&D in the 1980s for the character development, combat or exploration then in 2014 the system is obsolete.  Video games will give you a far more immersive experience than a bunch of paper & dice (or a simple UI) can ever hope to recreate.  Tabletop RPGs are now a niche within a niche; it remains the best format for freeform interactive storytelling but not much else.

The one thing I don't get are MMOs.  Could never get into them.  The world is basically static and you have no control over the fact that most of the other players are dicks.  You're not ever going to get any sort of meaningful narrative flow going so it's not like I have trouble suspending disbelief as much as lack a reason to do it.


Like playing with modules. Too many DMs are stuck on the script and leave no room for player creativity.
 
2014-07-20 02:49:52 PM

dragonchild: yet_another_wumpus: The latest set of rules (5th ed) is said to be pretty good
"They" always say that.

Thing about RPGs is that unless you're playing cyberpunk, the materials really don't need reboots.  It's not like this stuff has to get reinvented every decade.  As far as d20-based high fantasy goes, Pathfinder got it just about right.  The only reason to buy a new system is for a wholly different experience built into the core ruleset, which runs counter to D&D's attempt to sell the same goddamn legacy.


The new rule-sets are more about profit generation than upgrading.
 
2014-07-20 02:58:44 PM
Pathfinder playah. Also play World of Darkness and Hero System 5th Edition.. 6th Edition is an abomination.

/21year old, second generation gamer.
//My folks still play D&D.
///Have played at Cons alongside my Mom and Dad.
////Twas good fun, Milords.
 
2014-07-20 03:34:21 PM

shortymac: The new rule-sets are more about profit generation than upgrading.


I always liked the bit in E.T. when the kids are playing D&D and the mom asks 'How do you win at this game?'  One answers, 'There's no winning.  It's like life, you don't win at life.'  Then another says, 'Money helps.'
 
2014-07-20 03:34:45 PM

Chameleon: rev. dave: I would never play D&D again.
I spent 3 years playing it every weekend in the late 80's before there were any fun fantasy video games.
There were a lot of turn based ones, and wizardry which I never owned.
But now there are numerous video games that use the same basic leveling growth model.  These are a billion times more fun.  Because just like there are controlling and annoying assholes in video games, they existed in D&D, but worse.  You had to be very picky about who you played with or they would start with the 'you're doing it all wrong' discussions which devolved into a tedious mess.   Now there are single player games, sadly they are all becoming multi-player where you get grief from strangers.

If you were playing D&D for the pure fun of levelling growth models, you were seriously doing it wrong.


The guys I played D&D with were some of my closest friends.  I've never even met anyone from my WoW guild.
 
2014-07-20 03:34:47 PM
I haven't played it yet, but D&D Next looks to me like it might be a decent system. I could imagine it being successful at getting back a lot of the Pathfinder base they lost with the 4th Edition debacle. It gets rid of a lot of the "clutter", which also makes it a lot friendlier to new players.

And I have to nitpick the article, BADD was "Bothered About Dungeons and Dragons", not "Be Against..."
 
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